Southwest

Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas and Western Tennessee

Welcome to WRJ Southwest District!

Message from Southwest District President, Cheryl Barenberg

Headshot Cheryl Barenberg

Welcome to WRJ Southwest District! Whether you are a member of Women of Reform Judaism (WRJ), leader of a WRJ affiliated women’s group/sisterhood, WRJ leader, or someone who just shares our common goal of ensuring a vibrant future for Reform Jewish Women, we hope you will find the information and resources available on this site helpful.

As you explore the site, you will find:

  • Information on the many programs and events held within our district that provide opportunities to connect with each other through praying, learning, and engaging with one another at regional conferences and local gatherings. 
  • Due to the current constraints on in-person events because of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have moved all events and programs to the Zoom online platform for the foreseeable future. We even recently held a very successful Virtual Convention in November, 2020.
  • Leadership and personal development through participation in educational programs.
  • Tools and resources to help you in your leadership role. 
  • Access to district leaders who are available to support you as advisors, consultants, teachers and program speakers. Our Executive Committee members and Committee Chairs, as well as the staff at the WRJ office, are available to assist you as needed.
  • Opportunities to share and network with other WRJ members and leaders throughout the Southwest. 

Our goal is to make meaningful connections by building and fostering our WRJ-wide family where every member has an opportunity to learn, grow and feel part of a nurturing community of Reform Jewish women. This website is part of making that happen. We invite your ideas and suggestions on how we can make this website, even more, user-friendly.

I am looking forward to hearing from you and learning about your passion for WRJ and discovering what brings you to the WRJ table.  I am sure it will be a time for us to gain knowledge from each other and share in our success as women’s groups, as leaders, and as individuals. 

Welcome to WRJ Southwest District! 

Cheryl Barenberg

 

Questions? We've got the answers on our FAQ page or feel free to Contact Us!

Support Southwest District and our philanthropic efforts

Southwest District strives to further the mission of Women of Reform Judaism: WRJ strengthens the voice of women worldwide and empowers them to create caring communities, nurture congregations, cultivate personal and spiritual growth, and advocate for and promote progressive Jewish values.

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Southwest District Group Picture

Attention Sisterhood/Women's Group Presidents

Upcoming Change in Leadership?

Don't forget to fill out WRJ's Sisterhood Leadership Change form if you have new 2020-2021 leadership at your Sisterhood/Women's Group. This way your new leadership can also receive WRJ news, events, tools, and more!

Planning a YES Fund event?

Click here to find helpful resources such as:

  • YES Fund Video
  • YES Fund Distribution Sheet
  • YES Fund Brochure
  • YES Fund Pledge Card
  • Yes Fund Toolkit

We want to showcase your sisterhood!

The Southwest District would love to showcase past and/or future programs presented or sponsored by your sisterhood. Please send a short summary with a photo or two to my email below.  Please consider adding me to your sisterhood or Temple email list and/or share with me your Facebook page so that I can look for interesting things to post each month. 

Ann Weintraub
Vice President of Marketing and Communications
ann@amjdesignonline.com

Southwest Schmooze

Our monthly newsletter, The Southwest Schmooze, highlights important dates, upcoming events and news around the Southwest District!

Want to read past issues?

Subscribe to the Southwest Schmooze

Yammer: Helpful Hints

Searching for a new, innovative program to support the YES Fund? Are you looking for examples of alternative leadership structures for your sisterhood? Do you have an ingenious new matzah ball recipe that you are dying to share? You can ask these questions, find solutions, and share your own insights through WRJ's networking platformYammer.

Yammer is a Microsoft-based social platform that allows members to post and share ideas and files with each other, creating connections and collaborations with our women around the world. WRJ women are in rich conversation on this platform every day. Getting involved can give you and your sisterhood fresh ideas and answers from others who share your challenges. It also provides an exciting way to celebrate your successes.

To build on this resource, click here for are some advanced-level tips to use our platform in the best way to benefit you

If you aren't already on Yammer, email leadership@wrj.org to request that you and your sisters be invited to the WRJ Yammer network (including our Southwest District group). Be sure to include your name, sisterhood, and position (if any).

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Blog Posts

Engaging Young Women with WRJ

November 26, 2021
A tapestry of generations—that’s one of the taglines our Temple Emanu-El WRJ Sisterhood has used to reflect the importance of including women* at every age and stage in our sisterhood.

WRJ Connections Can Make A Difference

October 8, 2021
Tory served as the Cantorial Soloist/Music Director with Congregation Gates of Prayer outside of New Orleans for 30+ years, aiding her congregants as they dealt with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Fast forward, Tory now lives in Chicago but is still connected to her WRJ Southwest District sisters. As Hurricane Ida rolled through, she felt many things, but mostly the instinct to help.

Parashah Noach

October 8, 2021
Interpreting the words, "Noah was a just man, and perfect in his generations," Rabbi Johanan taught that Noah was considered righteous in his generations, but would not have been considered righteous in other generations.

Events

A Taste of Israel

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15 Tevet 5782
The Israel Education Committee presents a fun-filled afternoon with cooking and dancing with Luisa and Seth Narins.

Sisterhoods are dedicated to a wide variety of religious, educational, social, philanthropic, and advocacy efforts. They are also an outlet for Reform Jewish women and an integral part of any congregation. Find a sisterhood in your area today!

WRJ Updates

Parashah Mikietz

December 2, 2021
I chose to write this Voices piece because I felt the date was convenient, little did I pay attention to it as part of Joseph’s story. My son Jesse’s Hebrew name is Josef, and his Bar Mitzvah Torah portion was Vayeishev, part of the Joseph story. Now I am writing a Voices piece about Parashat Mikietz. Coincidence?

Gratitude: A Year in Review and What’s Ahead for Our Future

December 2, 2021
We wake every morning and pray, Modeh ani le-fa-necha, with gratitude and joy, thanking G-d for allowing us to open our eyes and embrace this new day. Traditionally, we are to find 100 things a day to recognize and be grateful. During this last year, I began a journal to help me recognize and thank G-d for special people, actions, places, and feelings that fill my soul and for which I am eternally grateful.

Parashah Vayeishev

November 26, 2021
This week’s Torah portion, Vayeishev (Genesis 37:1-40:23), begins with Joseph sharing two dreams with his brothers and ends with Joseph interpreting dreams for both the Pharaoh’s cupbearer and chief baker.